As a young girl who grew up with Charlie’s Angels and Mary Tyler Moore as female heroines, streaming television is downright exciting these days thanks to the birth of a new archetype: The female PTSD survivor.

While PTSD is popularly associated with male combat vets, did you know more women than men suffer from PTSD?

Also, women are more likely to suffer from complex post-traumatic stress disorder, or CPTSD, which results from ongoing trauma versus a singular acute event.

This is because women are most often the victims of childhood sexual abuse, sexual assault, sexual harassment, sexual discrimination, and domestic…

In my line of work I have had an opportunity to learn how hundreds of different supplements work. This is based on peer-reviewed science and the clinical experience of functional medicine doctors I have learned from.

Of course, this also means I have spent way too much money on supplements over the years. I used to feel guilty about this but I realized it helped me learn which ones pack the most punch. (Keep in mind this is all super individual and depends on your particular health battles.)

With that said, if someone held a gun to my head and…

The autoimmune diet, which eliminates grains, dairy, nightshade vegetables, eggs, soy, and sweeteners, has changed countless numbers of lives by removing inflammatory triggers. It is a powerfully medicinal strategy for folks with autoimmunity who find relief nowhere else.

The autoimmune diet provides extra challenges for those with disordered eating

It is also a diet loaded with landmines in a culture that is hellbent on force feeding you junk food yet shames you for getting fat should you eat it. So much female value is tied to thinness, and many women develop a tortured and adversarial relationship with food and their bodies. …

Perimenopause is typically associated with hot flashes, but another common symptom is insomnia. Garden-variety insomnia can be helped with natural remedies such as herbs, magnesium, or melatonin. Some women also report the indica strain of THC ensures a good night’s sleep.

However, for other perimenopausal women, insomnia is so severe that even heavy-duty pharmaceuticals like Ambien barely make a dent. They report waking up every hour to go to the bathroom, not being able to fall asleep, or not being able to stay asleep for more than a few hours. …

Too many women are suffering alone through one of the most difficult periods of their lives in their mid-40s to mid-50s when they go through perimenopause. Some go through early menopause or surgical menopause. No one talks to us about the sometimes severe and debilitating symptoms that can occur, lasting for years.

Medical doctors dismiss their struggling female patients, shrugging their shoulders and saying, “You’re just aging.” …

After my knee injury and surgery I put myself in a physical therapy strengthening program. The emphasis is on exercising safely and building muscles around the joints to support their stability and integrity. Not cheap, but the program appealed to my need for caution around my fresh injury as well as my autoimmune condition.

I had crashed too many times already from over exercis, and learned to err on the side of caution, especially while also now battling a tenacious new mold illness.

Exercise is great for autoimmunity and other chronic health conditions. It activates a wide variety of neurochemical…

Cat lady fears

Recently on an online dating forum, a woman fretted that she would end up a single 65-year-old living with her five cats. This image filled her with despair. Though I’m more than 10 years out and three cats short, I am this fearsome image — aging, divorced, and a devoted member of my feline pride.

The idea of this existence also once filled me with dread. After all, the older single woman is the ultimate failure in the game of being female, in which our societal currency hinges on our value to men.

I chose to bow out of the…

Elaine Marshall

Functional medicine writer covering autoimmunity, perimenopause, diet PTSD, and women’s wellness. Book ghostwriter; blogger at

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